English Bible Translations:

This section gives a brief summary of the history of the english Bible versions through history.  Simply click on the + sign to the right and find out information about a particular translations. Please be advised that translations with the * sign are Bible versions that HerBibleStudies.com likes and has used in its Bible Studies. This information was compiled from :https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_English_Bible_translations HerBibleStudies.com recommends that you visit this website to find more information about even more bible translations.

American Standard Version (ASV)

The Revised Version, Standard American Edition of the Bible, more commonly known as the American Standard Version (ASV), is a Bible translation into English that was completed in 1901 with the publication of the revision of the Old Testament; the revised New Testament had been released in 1900. It was originally best known by its full name, but soon came to have other names, such as the American Revised Version, the American Standard Revision, the American Standard Revised Bible, and the American Standard Edition. By the time its copyright was renewed in 1929, it had come to be known by its present name, the American Standard Version. Because of its prominence in seminaries, it was sometimes simply called the “Standard Bible” in the United States.

American Standard Version
Star Bible’s facsimile reprint of the American Standard Version
Full name Revised Version, Standard American Edition
Abbreviation ASV
OT published 1901
NT published 1900
Online as American Standard Version at Wikisource
Derived from English Revised Version 1881–1885
Textual basis NT: Westcott and Hort 1881 and Tregelles 1857, (Reproduced in a single, continuous, form in Palmer 1881). OT: Masoretic Text with some Septuagint influence).
Translation type Formal equivalence
Reading level High school
Version revision 1929 (copyright renewal)
Copyright Copyright expired
Religious affiliation Protestant inter-denominational

 

The Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Amplified Bible (AMP) is an English language translation of the Bible produced jointly by Zondervan and The Lockman Foundation. The first edition was published in 1965. It is largely a revision of the American Standard Version of 1901, with reference made to various texts in the original languages. It is designed to “amplify” the text by using additional wording and a system of punctuation and other typographical features to bring out all shades of meaning present[] in the original texts.

he Amplified Bible was published in six stages:

  • Gospel of John (1954)
  • New Testament (1958)
  • Old Testament Volume Two (Book of Job–Book of Malachi) (1962)
  • Old Testament Volume One (Book of Genesis–Book of Esther) (1964)
  • Complete Bible (1965)
  • Expanded Edition (1987)

The Amplified Bible was revised in 2015, now known as the Amplified Holy Bible; more amplifications in the Old Testament were added, and refinements made to the New Testament amplifications.

The bulk of the work of producing the Amplified Bible was undertaken by Frances Siewert, employed by the Lockman Foundation.

Amplified Bible
Full name Amplified Bible
Abbreviation AMP
OT published 1962 and 1964
NT published 1958
Complete Bible
published
1965
Authorship Zondervan (subsidiary of News Corp) and The Lockman Foundation.
Translation type Free, largely dynamic translation
Version revision 1987, 2015
Publisher Zondervan Publishing House
Copyright 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987, 2015

 

An American Translation (AAT)

The Bible, An American Translation (AAT) consists of the Old Testament translated by a group of scholars under the editorship of John Merlin Powis Smith, the Apocrypha translated by Edgar J. Goodspeed, and the New Testament translated by Edgar J. Goodspeed.

In a foreword to the 1949 edition, Goodspeed wrote, “The rapid advance of learning in recent years in the fields of history, archaeology, and language has thrown new light upon every part of the Bible. At the same time our changing English speech has carried us farther and farther from the sixteenth-century diction in which all our standard versions of it are clothed. Yet the great messages of the Old and New Testaments were never more necessary than in our present confused and hurried life. We have, therefore, sought to produce a new translation of them, based upon the assured results of modern study, and put in the familiar language of today.”

An American Translation
Full name The Bible, An American Translation
Abbreviation AAT
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1939
Authorship J.M. Powis Smith (OT) and Edgar J. Goodspeed (deuterocanonical books and NT)
Publisher The University of Chicago Press
Beck's American Translation

Beck’s American Translation is an abbreviated version of “The Holy Bible: An American Translation” by William F. Beck (abbreviated BECK, but also AAT; not to be confused with Smith/Goodspeed’s earlier “An American Translation” , which is abbreviated AAT or SGAT). The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod’s Concordia Publishing House published his “An American Translation–The New Testament In The Language Of Today” in 1963.

The preface to the 1976 Bicentennial edition, written by Herman Otten, states:

Dr. Beck wrote on a hospital bed while under oxygen shortly before his death on October 24, 1966 in a statement titled “My Old Testament”: “Promotion of my translation will run up against special difficulties with my exact translation of the prophecies and every doctrinal passage. Modernist powers use all their tricks and tyranny to oppose a Christ-centered Bible.” … The 1967 convention of this church in a resolution titled “To Encourage Publication of Dr. Beck’s Translation of Old Testament” resolved “That we encourage Concordia Publishing House to continue its negotiations to make Dr. William Beck’s translation available to the public as soon as possible.”

Beck wanted his translation to become the official translation of the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, but the synod has no official English translation.

An American Translation
 
Full name The Holy Bible, An American Translation
Abbreviation BECK
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1976
Authorship William F. Beck
Publisher Leader Publishing Company: New Haven, MO

 

Berkeley Version

The Berkeley Version of the New Testament is an English translation published by Zondervan in 1945. This “New Berkeley Version in Modern English” was later expanded to include the entire Bible, published in 1959 as the Modern Language Bible.

The stated aim of this version was to achieve plain, up-to-date expression which reflects as directly as possible the meaning of the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. This revision was very extensive, while not being a re-translation. Explanatory notes were revised as well as added. Topical headings were rephrased

According to editor-in-chief Gerrit Verkuyl: “The conviction that God wants His truth conveyed to His offspring in the language in which they think and live led me to produce the Berkeley Version (BV) of the New Testament. For I grew increasingly aware that the King James Version (AV) is only, in part, the language of our people.”

Berkeley Version
Full name The Berkeley Version in Modern English
Abbreviation BV
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1959
Copyright Copyright by Zondervan Publishing House
The Bible in Living English

The Bible in Living English is a translation of the Bible by Steven T. Byington. He translated the Bible on his own for 45 years from 1898 to 1943, but was unable to have it published during his lifetime. After he died in 1957, the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society acquired the publication rights, but the translation was not published until 1972. US copyright law therefore protected it until 2000; the Copyright Catalog does not list the Watch Tower Society as having applied for a renewal on this publication. The translation may still be in copyright in countries not implementing the rule of the shorter term.

A notable characteristic of this translation was the use of God’s name, which Byington translated Jehovah in the Old Testament. Byington states in his preface: “The spelling and the pronunciation are not highly important. What is highly important is to keep it clear that this is a personal name. There are several texts that cannot be properly understood if we translate this name by a common noun like Lord, or, much worse, by a substantivized adjective”.

The Bible in Living English
Full name The Bible in Living English
Abbreviation By
Complete Bible
published
1972
Copyright Copyright 1972 Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania

 

Bishops' Bible

The Bishops’ Bible is an English translation of the Bible which was produced under the authority of the established Church of England in 1568. It was substantially revised in 1572, and the 1602 edition was prescribed as the base text for the King James Bible that was completed in 1611.

BRG Bible

The Blue, Red and Gold Letter Edition of the Holy Bible, or BRG Bible is a version of the King James Bible translation of the Bible which describes itself as ‘an advancement of the “Red Letter” Bible popular among many for over 110 years’.

Red letter bibles traditionally printed the words spoken by Jesus, commonly only while he was on the Earth, in red letters. The BRG Bible is an outgrowth of the Red Letter Edition German-born entrepreneur and philanthropist Louis Klopsch published in 1901. It highlights the words of Jesus in red, owing to the color of blood. The BRG Bible uses blue ink for the spoken, quotable words of God the Father, red for the spoken words of Jesus and gold for references to the Holy Spirit. Additionally, words of Angels (and other Divine beings) are underlined in Blue in both OT/NT and Messianic Prophecies/Indicators of Jesus Christ are underlined in Red in OT.

An example of this coloring can be found in 1 John 5:7 where Father appears in Blue and Holy Ghost appears in Gold:

This edition was created by Scott Johnson, the preacher for the East Faulkner Church of Christ in El Dorado, Arkansas, and published by BRG Bible Ministries.

Additional versions of the BRG Bible include a New Testament Only and Spanish Reina Valera.

Christian Community Bible

The Christian Community Bible is a translation of the Christian Bible in the English language originally produced in the Philippines.

It is part of a family of translations in multiple languages intended to be more accessible to ordinary readers, particularly those in Third World countries. The primary features of these translations are the use of the language of ordinary people and the inclusion of extensive commentaries aimed at helping its readers to understand the meaning of the biblical texts.

Christian Community Bible
Abbreviation CCB
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1988
Textual basis OT: Hebrew text
NT: Greek text
Translation type Dynamic equivalence

 

Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible (CSB) is a modern English Bible translation of the Christian Bible. Work on the translation was completed in June 2016, with the first full edition released in March 2017

The Christian Standard Bible (CSB) is a major revision of the 2009 edition of the Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB). The CSB incorporates advances in biblical scholarship to improve upon translation decisions, word choice, and style. It also removes some of the novel features of the HCSB, such as consistently translating the tetragrammaton as “Lord” rather than “Yahweh” and using “brothers and sisters” for the plural term “brothers” in Greek.

The HCSB was translated by an international team of 100 scholars from 17 denominations. The HCSB New Testament was released in 1999, and the entire translation was released in 2004.

Work on the CSB revision was undertaken by the Translation and Review Team, a trans-denominational group of 21 conservative Evangelical Christian biblical scholars. Backgrounds represented include Southern Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, conservative Anglican, and non-denominational Evangelical churches.

Ongoing translation decisions are governed by the ten member CSB Translation Oversight Committee, co-chaired by Dr. Thomas R. Schreiner and Dr. David L. Allen.

Clear Word

The Clear Word, originally published in March 1994 as the Clear Word Bible, is an English-language “devotional paraphrase of the Bible expanded for clarity”.It is an interpretive text of the Bible written as a personal devotional exercise by Jack Blanco, former dean of the School of Religion at Southern Adventist University, to be an additional study tool and devotional alongside the Bible. Major portions of the translation are material added by the author. It is printed in chapter-and-verse format, two columns to a page.

The free paraphrase was initially printed at the school by the Southern College Press of Southern Adventist University and sold in Church-owned Adventist Book Centers. Though The Clear Word is not officially endorsed by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, it is now being printed by the Review and Herald Publishing Association.

Full name The Clear Word
Other names The Clear Word “An Expanded Paraphrase”
Abbreviation TCW
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1994
Authorship Jack Blanco
Translation type 100% paraphrase rate, Contemporary
Version revision 1996
Publisher Jack Blanco
Copyright 1994
Common English Bible

The Common English Bible (CEB) is an English translation of the Bible whose language is intended to be at a comfortable reading level for the majority of English readers. The translation was begun in late 2008 and was finished in 2011. It includes the deuterocanonical books, or apocrypha, which are found in the Catholic Church and Orthodox Church canons, and in Anglican Bibles. The Common English Bible is sponsored by an alliance of several denominational publishers in the United States operating under an umbrella group called the Christian Resources Development Corporation (CRDC), incorporated in 2009 and based in Nashville, Tennessee. The publishing houses participating are Chalice Press (Disciples of Christ), Westminster John Knox Press (Presbyterian Church U.S.A.), Church Publishing Inc (Episcopal Church), Pilgrim Press (United Church of Christ), and Abingdon Press (United Methodist Church). According to the CEB’s preface, the motivation for producing a new translation was that “it has proved difficult to combine concern for accuracy and accessibility in one translation that the typical reader or worshipper would be able to understand.” One hundred twenty scholars from twenty-four different denominations worked on the translation.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Complete Jewish Bible
Abbreviation CJB
Complete Bible
published
1998
Textual basis OT: Masoretic Text . NT: Greek New Testament 3rd Edition UBS, 1975. Ancient Greek source manuscripts into modern English with some Yiddish expressions.
Translation type Dynamic equivalence
Reading level High School
Copyright Jewish New Testament Publications, Inc.
Religious affiliation Messianic Judaism
Website http://messianicjewish.net/
 
 

The Complete Jewish Bible (sometimes referred to as the CJB)[1] is a translation of the Bible into English by David H. Stern. It consists of both Stern’s revised translation of the Old Testament (Tanakh) plus his original Jewish New Testament (B’rit Hadashah) translation in one volume. It was published in its entirety in 1998 by Jewish New Testament Publications, Inc.[2]

The Old Testament translation is a paraphrase of the public domain 1917 Jewish Publication Society Version, although scholar Bruce Metzger notes that where Stern disagreed with the JPS version, he translated from the Masoretic Text himself. The New Testament section is Stern’s original translation from the ancient Greek.

Stern states that his purpose for producing the Complete Jewish Bible was “to restore God’s Word to its original Jewish context and culture as well as be in easily read modern English.” This translation was also intended to be fully functional for Messianic Jewish congregations.

Stern follows the order and the names of the Old Testament books in the Hebrew Bible, rather than those of typical Christian Bibles. He uses Hebrew names for people and places, such as Eliyahu for “Elijah”, and Sha’ul for “Saul.” The work also incorporates Hebrew and Yiddish expressions that Stern refers to as “Jewish English”, such as matzah for “unleavened bread”[3] and mikveh for “ritual immersion pool”.[4]

Tree of Life Version of the Holy Scriptures (TLV)

Tree of Life Version
Abbreviation TLV
Complete Bible
published
2011
Textual basis OT: Masoretic Text . NT: Nestle-Aland’s Novum Testamentum Graece (27th edition).
Translation type Word-for-word
Reading level 8th Grade (Age 13)
Copyright Messianic Jewish Bible Society
Religious affiliation Messianic Judaism
Website https://www.tlvbiblesociety.org/
 
 

The Tree of Life Version (abbreviated as “TLV”), first published in 2011, is a Messianic Jewish translation of the Hebrew Bible (or TA-NA-KH) and the New Testament (or New Covenant) sponsored by the Messianic Jewish Family Bible Society and The King’s University.[5]

According to the publisher, Baker Books, the Tree of Life Version (TLV) is intended to be a translation that “speaks with a decidedly Jewish-friendly voice […] to recover the authentic context of the Bible and the Christian faith.” The sponsors of the translation sought to restore to the biblical texts “their actual Jewish essence,” which, in their view, is lost in most English translations. Specifically, the project sought to restore “the Jewish order of the books of the Old Testament,” “the Jewish name of the Messiah, Yeshua,” “reverence for the four-letter unspoken name of God,” and “Hebrew transliterated terms, such as shalom, shofar, and shabbat.” Prior to the publication of the TLV in its entirety, It was previously published either with the TLV New Covenant alone or bound together with the public domain 1917 Jewish Publication Society Version Tanakh as the Messianic Jewish Shared Heritage Bible.[6]

The team of Messianic Jewish and Christian scholars commissioned to work on the project included Dr. Jeffrey L. Seif, Rabbi Dr. Jeffrey Feinberg, Rabbi Dr. Glenn Blank, Dr. Hellene Dallaire, Rabbi Jeff Adler, Rabbi Barney Kasdan, Dr. Vered Hillel. Other contributors included Mark Anthony, Michael L. Brown, Dr. Jack Cairns, Dr. Mordechai Cohen, Pat Feinberg, Dr. John Fischer, Dr. Patrice Fischer, Dr. Steve Galiley, Dr. Ray Gannon, Dr. Henri Goulet, Dr. Ihab Griess, David Harris, Dr. Stanley Horton, Dr. Daniel Juster, Liz Kasdan, Elliot Klayman, Dr. Seth Klayman, Dr. Craig Keener, Phillip Lanning, Dr. Barrie Mallin, Dr. Shawn Moir, Dr. Richard Nicol, Dr. Seth Postell, Dr. David Rothstein, Dr. Noel Rabinowitz, Dr. Rich Robinson, Dr. Matthew Salathe, Dr. Jim Sibley, Josh Sofaer, Dr. Greg Stone, Rabbi Eric Tokajer, John Taylor, Myles Weiss, Dr. Randy Weiss, Dr. Lon Wiksel, and Dr. Wayne Wilks.[7]

Messianic Jewish Literal Translation (MJLT)

Messianic Jewish Literal Translation
Abbreviation MJLT
Textual basis NT: Novum Testamentum Graece.
Translation type Word-for-word
Reading level High School
Copyright Perfect Word Publishing
Religious affiliation Messianic Judaism
Website https://www.mjlt.org/
 
 

The Messianic Jewish Literal Translation (MJLT) is a Messianic Jewish Bible translation based on Young’s Literal Translation (YLT). The MJLT is a re-rendering of the YLT for the modern, Messianic reader, which the publisher says is meant to restore the Jewish perspective of Scripture which has been “obscured by deeply ingrained anti-Jewish, anti-Torah preconceptions.” [8]

Though the translation is meant to bring out the Messianic Jewish context and meaning of the New Covenant Scriptures, the publisher says that it is meant for all believers, whether Jewish or Gentile, who “desire the word’s pure milk.”[9] In addition to being Messianic Jewish in nature, the MJLT seeks to put forth the meaning of the original language by giving a literal, word-for-word rendering from Greek to English.

This Bible version has several unusual features:[10]

  • The actual Hebrew lettering with transliteration for various names, places and terms is printed in line with the English text of the MJLT, accentuating the Jewishness of Scripture. Terms and names such as תּוֹרָה, Torah and יֵשׁוּעַ, Yeshua, and titles of books such as מַתִּתְיָהוּ‬ Matit’yahu (Matthew) contain the actual Hebrew lettering.
  • The sequence of books has been rearranged, first, according to the author’s original audience (either Jewish, or both Jewish and Gentile together), and second, chronologically, according to the order in which they were written.
  • Special notations show the reader when and where Paul wrote his letters in relation to the events recorded in the Book of Acts.

New Jerusalem Version (NJV)

New Jerusalem Version
Abbreviation NJV
Complete Bible
published
2019
Textual basis OT: Masoretic Text . NT: Majority Text.
Translation type Word-for-word
Reading level High School
Copyright Hineni Publishers
Religious affiliation Messianic Judaism
Website https://njvbible.com
 
 

The New Jerusalem Version is an English Messianic Bible translation first published in 2019 by Hineni Publishers. It is primarily an update of the 1901 ASV, WEB and “The Holy Scriptures According to the Masoretic Text,’’ published in 1917 by the Jewish Publication Society. It consists of both the TANAKH (Old Testament) and the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant). The TANAKH is based on the Masoretic text and the Brit Chadashah is mainly based on the Majority Text.[11]

According to the Publisher, Hineni Publishers, the goal of the New Jerusalem Version is to make the personal name of God known to English-speaking people from all around the world, and to help the reader to rediscover the Hebrew roots of the Bible. Where the personal unutterable name of God occurs in the Masoretic Text, the original Hebrew יהוה (the Tetragrammaton) has been preserved; and the name of the Messiah has been transliterated from Hebrew: Yeshua. Book titles are in both English and Hebrew,[12] and several Hebrew words such as shalom, Torah, kohen, Sheol, Gehinnom, etc. have been transliterated.[13]

The publisher states the New Jerusalem Version distinguishes itself from most English Bibles by restoring the:

  • Personal unutterable Hebrew name of God: יהוה
  • Hebrew name of the Messiah: Yeshua
  • Feasts of God: Pesach, Shavuot, Yom Kippur, etc.
  • Names of God: Adonai Elohim Tzva’ot, El Shaddai, El Elyon, etc.
  • Order of books: following the Jewish tradition of the TANAKH (Torah, Nevi’im, Ketuvim).[14]

The Lapid Jewish Aramaic New Testament (LJANT)

Lapid Jewish Aramaic New Testament
Abbreviation LJANT
Complete Bible
published
2010
Textual basis Khabouris codex, Yonan Codex, Houghton 1199.
Translation type Word-for-word
Reading level High School/College
Copyright Lapid Publications
Religious affiliation Lapid/Messianic Judaism
Website http://www.LapidBooks.com
 
 

A translation of 3 Aramaic manuscripts of the New Testament, the Khabouris Codex, Yonan Codex and the Houghton 1199 Codex. Translator, Christopher Fredrickson spent 9 years translating these texts and included transliterations of key Aramaic words with their definitions in brackets beside the transliterated Aramaic words.

The order of books follows the traditional Christian order of books so that it is familiar in that respect to a Christian audience. It also includes textural and theological appendixes with the addition of a study guide to the Lord’s Prayed and the Didache. The Didache was added not as a scriptural reference but instead to help new believers with beginning their walk which is exclusive to the third edition.

Distinguishing characteristics of this translation according to the Publisher and translator include:

  • 520 transliterated key words and phrases
  • translated from only 3 Ancient Aramaic Codexes
  • 70 pages of textural and theological appendixes
  • complete study guide to the Lord’s Prayer
  • the Didache [15]

Other versions

  • World Messianic Bible. “The World Messianic Bible (WMB) is a Modern English update of the American Standard Version. It has also been known as the Hebrew Names Version (HNV) and the World English Bible: Messianic Edition (WEB:ME).”[16]
  • New Messianic Version Bible. “The New Messianic Version Bible (NMVB) or (NMV) is a Modern English update of the King James Version, with corrections made in select passages to clarify the Hebrew or Greek. In addition to transliterating proper names, it translates them in-line with the text. The result is a reading similar to the Amplified Bible.[17][18]
Contemporary English Version

The Contemporary English Version or CEV (also known as Bible for Today’s Family) is a translation of the Bible into English, published by the American Bible Society. An anglicized version was produced by the British and Foreign Bible Society, which includes metric measurements for the Commonwealth market.

The CEV project began as a result of studies conducted by Barclay Newman in 1985 regarding the speech patterns used in books, magazines, newspapers, and television. These studies focused on how English was read and heard. This led to a series of test volumes being published in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Among the volumes published were Luke Tells the Good News About Jesus (1987), The Good News Travels Fast – The Acts of the Apostles (1988), A Few Who Dared to Trust God (1990), and A Book About Jesus (1991). In 1991, the 175th anniversary of the American Bible Society, the CEV New Testament was released. The CEV Old Testament was released in 1995. In 1999, the Apocryphal/Deuterocanonical Books were published.

While the CEV is sometimes mischaracterized as a revision of the Good News Bible, it is a new translation designed for a lower reading level than the GNB. The American Bible Society continues to promote both translations.

Contemporary English Version
 
Full name Contemporary English Version
Other names Bible for Today’s Family
Abbreviation CEV
OT published 1995
NT published 1991
Complete Bible
published
1995
Translation type Dynamic equivalence
Copyright American Bible Society 1991, 1992, 1995; Anglicizations British and Foreign Bible Society 1996

 

Concordant Version

he Concordant Version is an English translation of the Bible compiled by the Concordant Publishing Concern (CPC), which was founded by Adolph Ernst Knoch in 1909. The principal works of the CPC are the Concordant Literal New Testament with Keyword Concordance (“CLNT”) and the Concordant Version of the Old Testament (“CVOT”). A. E. Knoch designed the Concordant Version in such a way as to put the English reader who lacks a formal knowledge of Koine Greek in possession of all the vital facts of the most ancient codices: Codex Vaticanus, Codex Sinaiticus, and Codex Alexandrinus. The CPC’s efforts yielded a restored Greek text, titled The Concordant Greek Text, containing all of the important variant readings found in the codices mentioned above. This was done with the intent of conforming, as far as possible, to the original autograph manuscripts. An utterly consistent hyper-literal sub-linear based upon a standard English equivalent for each Greek element is to be found beneath each Greek word. The Concordant Greek Text forms the basis of the Concordant Literal New Testament, which is more idiomatic in its English than the hyper-literal sublinear. The Concordant Literal New Testament and the Concordant Greek Text are linked together and correlated for the English reader by means of an English concordance—the Keyword Concordance—and a complementary list of the Greek elements.

With the use of the Concordant method of translation the CPC endeavored to recognize the importance of the vocabulary of Scripture, keeping distinct the words used in the original languages by giving each Greek word—as far as is possible—its own unique and consistent English equivalent. While acknowledging that absolute consistency cannot be achieved in the making of an idiomatic English version, the introduction to the Sixth edition of the Concordant Literal New Testament states that the CLNT, by being harmonious with the original texts, keeps to a minimum the confusion resulting from translating different Greek words with the same English word, or one Greek word with many English words. It is this principle of consistent or “concordant” translation which was also employed in the compilation of the Concordant Version of the Old Testament (CVOT), now completed. Therefore, with the exception of occasional idiomatic variants, each English word in the Concordant Version does exclusive duty for a single Greek or Hebrew word. Thus, according to the CPC, a substantial formal correspondence is maintained between the source languages and the receptor language.

Concordant Version
Full name Concordant Version
Other names Concordant Version: The Sacred Scriptures
Abbreviation CVOT, CLNT
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1926
Translation type Extreme Formal Equivalence, nearly interlinear in tone
Version revision 1931, 1966
Publisher Concordant Publishing Concern (CPC)
Copyright Concordant Publishing Concern

 

Coverdale Bible

The Coverdale Bible, compiled by Myles Coverdale and published in 1535, was the first complete Modern English translation of the Bible (not just the Old Testament or New Testament), and the first complete printed translation into English (cf. Wycliffe’s Bible in manuscript). The later editions (folio and quarto) published in 1537 were the first complete Bibles printed in England. The 1537 folio edition carried the royal licence and was therefore the first officially approved Bible translation in English. The Psalter from the Coverdale Bible was included in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer beginning in 1662, and in all editions of the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer until 1979.

The place of publication of the 1535 edition was long disputed. The printer was assumed to be either Froschover in Zurich or Cervicornus and Soter (in Cologne or Marburg). Since the discovery of Guido Latré, in 1997, the printer has been identified as Merten de Keyser, in Antwerp. The publication was partly financed by Jacobus van Meteren, in Antwerp, whose sister-in-law, Adriana de Weyden, married John Rogers. The other backer of the Coverdale Bible was Jacobus van Meteren’s nephew, Leonard Ortels (†1539), father of Abraham Ortelius (1527–1598), the famous humanist geographer and cartographer.

Although Coverdale was also involved in the preparation of the Great Bible of 1539, the Coverdale Bible continued to be reprinted. The last of over 20 editions of the whole Bible, or its New Testament, appeared in 1553.

Coverdale Bible
 
Full name
The Bible, that is the Holy Scripture of the Old and New Testament, faithfully translated into English.
Abbreviation TCB
Complete Bible
published
1535
Copyright Public domain due to age.
Darby Bible

History and principles

Darby published a translation of the New Testament in 1867, with revised editions in 1872 and 1884. After his death, some of his students produced an Old Testament translation based on Darby’s French and German translations (see below). The complete Darby Bible, including Darby’s 3rd edition New Testament and his students’ Old Testament, was first published in 1890.

Darby’s purpose was, as he states in the preface to his English NT, to make a modern translation for the unlearned who have neither access to manuscript texts nor training and knowledge of ancient languages of the Scriptures. He was the principal scholar for a number of translations – and not the sole translator of any one of the various translations that bear his name. He worked with various brethren who had academic and spiritual qualifications. He also acknowledges dependence on the critical work of Samuel Prideaux Tregelles and various other scholars. Darby’s translation work was not intended to be read aloud. His work was for study and private use. In his own oral ministry he generally used the English KJV.

When Darby first issued his New Translation into English he wrote in the preface to the Revelation: “if the reader find my translation exceedingly similar to Mr. William Kelly’s, I can only rejoice in it, as mine was made a year or two before his came out, and he has never seen mine up to the time of my writing this …” (Darby went on to write that his New Testament translation had been lying by him for some years then.) In his introduction to the 1871 German version, he wrote, “In the issue of this translation, the purpose is not to offer to the man of letters a learned work, but rather to provide the simple and unlearned reader with as exact a translation as possible.”

In the Old Testament Darby translates the covenant name of God as “Jehovah” instead of rendering it “LORD” or “GOD” (in all capital letters) as most English translations do. Among other widely used translations aside from The Darby Bible other versions such as Robert Young’s Literal Translation (1862, 1898), The American Standard Version (1901), Recovery Version (1991), and the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ New World Translation (1961, 1984, 2013) have followed this practice. The footnotes of many editions (such as the 1961 Modified Notes Edition) of Darby Bible’s New Testament indicate where “Lord” (“Kurios” in Greek) in the scripture text probably refers to Jehovah. The 1961 Modified Notes Edition of the Darby Bible includes the 1871 New Testament Preface, which says in part: “All the instances in which the article is wanting before Kurios are not marked by brackets; but I give here all the passages in which Kurios, which the LXX employ for Jehovah, thence transferred to the New Testament, is used as a proper name; that is, has the sense of ‘Jehovah.'” It then gives a listing of those places.

For some verses the Darby New Testament has detailed footnotes which make reference to his scholarly textual criticism comparisons.

Critics of the Darby Bible include Charles Spurgeon.

 

Douay–Rheims Bible

The Douay–Rheims Bible (pronounced /ˌd/ or /ˌd. ˈrmz/) (also known as the Rheims–Douai Bible or Douai Bible, and abbreviated as D–R and DRB) is a translation of the Bible from the Latin Vulgate into English made by members of the English College, Douai, in the service of the Catholic Church. The New Testament portion was published in Reims, France, in 1582, in one volume with extensive commentary and notes. The Old Testament portion was published in two volumes twenty-seven years later in 1609 and 1610 by the University of Douai. The first volume, covering Genesis through Job, was published in 1609; the second, covering Psalms to 2 Machabees plus the deuterocanonical books of the Vulgate, was published in 1610. Marginal notes took up the bulk of the volumes and had a strong polemical and patristic character. They offered insights on issues of translation, and on the Hebrew and Greek source texts of the Vulgate.

The purpose of the version, both the text and notes, was to uphold Catholic tradition in the face of the Protestant Reformation which up till then had dominated Elizabethan religion and academic debate. As such it was an effort by English Catholics to support the Counter-Reformation. The New Testament was reprinted in 1600, 1621 and 1633. The Old Testament volumes were reprinted in 1635 but neither thereafter for another hundred years. In 1589, William Fulke collated the complete Rheims text and notes in parallel columns with those of the Bishops’ Bible. This work sold widely in England, being re-issued in three further editions to 1633. It was predominantly through Fulke’s editions that the Rheims New Testament came to exercise a significant influence on the development of 17th century English.

Much of the text of the 1582/1610 bible employed a densely Latinate vocabulary, making it extremely difficult to read the text in places. Consequently, this translation was replaced by a revision undertaken by bishop Richard Challoner; the New Testament in three editions of 1749, 1750, and 1752; the Old Testament (minus the Vulgate apocrypha), in 1750. Although retaining the title Douay–Rheims Bible, the Challoner revision was a new version, tending to take as its base text the King James Version rigorously checked and extensively adjusted for improved readability and consistency with the Clementine edition of the Vulgate. Subsequent editions of the Challoner revision, of which there have been very many, reproduce his Old Testament of 1750 with very few changes. Challoner’s New Testament was, however, extensively revised by Bernard MacMahon in a series of Dublin editions from 1783 to 1810. These Dublin versions are the source of some Challoner bibles printed in the United States in the 19th century. Subsequent editions of the Challoner Bible printed in England most often follow Challoner’s earlier New Testament texts of 1749 and 1750, as do most 20th-century printings and on-line versions of the Douay–Rheims bible circulating on the internet.

Although the Jerusalem Bible, New American Bible Revised Edition, Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition, and New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition are the most commonly used Bibles in English-speaking Catholic churches, the Challoner revision of the Douay–Rheims often remains the Bible of choice of more-traditional English-speaking Catholics.

Douay–Rheims Bible
Title page of the Old Testament, Tome 1 (1609)
Full name The Holy Bible Douay Rheims Version
Abbreviation DRB
Language Early Modern (Renaissance) English for original using Late Middle English reduced character set. Modern English use for subsequent editions.
OT published 1609–1610
NT published 1582
Authorship English College at Rheims and Douay
Derived from Vulgate
Textual basis NT: Vulgate. OT: Vulgate.
Translation type Formal equivalence translation of the Jerome Vulgate compared with Hebrew and Greek sources for accuracy. Subsequent editions use the Sixto-Clementine Vulgate. Used as interlinear bibles in diglots for the respective Vulgate versions.
Reading level University Academic (original), Grade 12 (DRA)
Version Revised in 1749, 1750, and 1752 by Richard Challoner (DRC). Several editions produced. Prominent among these is the 1899 American Edition (DRA).
Copyright Public domain
Religious affiliation Catholic Church
Easy-to-Read Version

The Holy Bible: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV) is an English translation of the Bible compiled by the World Bible Translation Center. It was originally published as the English Version for the Deaf (EVD) by BakerBooks.

Deaf readers sometimes struggle with reading English because sign language is their first language. The World Bible Translation Center (WBTC) decided to do a translation that would make reading the Bible easier for them. The EVD uses simpler vocabulary and shorter sentences to make it simpler to understand. Ervin Bishop did most of the translating for the WBTC. He used a thought-for-thought or functional equivalence method of translation. It was found to be useful for others who struggle with reading and is often used in prisons and literacy programs.

The ERV uses the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (1984) as its Old Testament text with some readings from the Dead Sea Scrolls. Also, it follows the Septuagint when its readings are considered more accurate. (The Septuagint is the ancient Greek translation of the Hebrew scriptures.) For the New Testament, the ERV uses the United Bible Societies’ Greek New Testament (fourth revised edition, 1993) and Nestle-Aland Novum Testament Graece (twenty-seventh edition, 1993).

The ERV caused controversy in the Churches of Christ (the WBTC is an outreach of the Churches of Christ). Goebel Music wrote a book critiquing this translation titled “Easy-to-Read Version: Easy to Read or Easy to Mislead?”, criticizing the ERV’s method of translation, textual basis, and wording of certain passages.

In 2004, a major revision of the ERV was finished. It used broader vocabulary and greater use of gender-inclusive language. The EVD was left unchanged, so it and the ERV now have different texts. Both Bibles are available online from the WBTC’s website.

Easy-to-Read Version
Full name Holy Bible: Easy-to-Read Version
Abbreviation ERV
Language English
Complete Bible
published
1987
Copyright Copyright by World Bible Translation Center
Evangelical Heritage Version

The Evangelical Heritage Version (EHV) is a translation of the Bible into the English language. The Bible translation began in 2013 due to the relative lack of a commonly accepted translation, especially among Lutherans, compared to the historical popularity of the King James Version and New International Version, due in part to the replacement of the 1984 version of the New International Version by the 2011 version and the aging language used in the King James Version. The group of translators consists of pastors, professors, and teachers from the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) and Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS). The Wartburg Project, the group which produced the EHV, has finished a version containing the New Testament and Psalms, which was published in the summer of 2017, and the full version of the EHV Bible was published in 2019 by Northwestern Publishing House.

Although WELS never had an official translation, prior to 2011 most WELS churches, as well as Northwestern Publishing House (NPH), used the version of the NIV from 1984. In 2011, a newer version of the NIV was published. Many members of the WELS and ELS had concerns about the accuracy of the newer translation, however the older version was no longer being printed. A committee of the ELS focused on doctrine suggested the use of the New King James Version, the English Standard Version, An American Translation, and the New American Standard Bible. In their 2013 biennial synod convention, a committee established by the WELS to evaluate Bible translations and give suggestions to their translators advised the use of the NIV 2011, Holman Christian Standard Bible, and English Standard Version in their publications, considering which would most accurately fit the needs of each publication. The convention also considered creating its own translation, but decided against it because of the cost and other factors.Some WELS delegates suggested that a translation could be attempted by a parasynodical organization.

The Wartburg Project began their work in September 2013 under the leadership of John F. Brug, a professor-emeritus of systematic theology and the Old Testament at the Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, and Brian R. Keller, a WELS pastor. Although the project is mostly led by pastors and teachers from the WELS, with some from the ELS, the EHV is not owned by or funded by the WELS or ELS.

Over 100 volunteers have joined the project, including professors and pastors from the WELS and ELS as well as laypeople to help in other areas such as proofreading.

The Wartburg Project was named after the German Bible translation Martin Luther made (known today as the Luther Bible) while he was in hiding at the Wartburg Castle. This was the first widely used Bible translation into the German language, the common language of Luther’s people, because of its accuracy and because it was easily understood by the common people speaking many dialects of German, and has influenced many later translations.

Geneva Bible

The Geneva Bible is one of the most historically significant translations of the Bible into English, preceding the King James Version by 51 years. It was the primary Bible of 16th-century English Protestantism and was used by William Shakespeare, Oliver Cromwell, John Knox, John Donne, and John Bunyan, author of The Pilgrim’s Progress (1678). It was one of the Bibles taken to America on the Mayflower (Pilgrim Hall Museum has collected several Bibles of Mayflower passengers). The Geneva Bible was used by many English Dissenters, and it was still respected by Oliver Cromwell’s soldiers at the time of the English Civil War, in the booklet “Cromwell’s Soldiers’ Pocket Bible”.

This version of the Bible is significant because, for the very first time, a mechanically printed, mass-produced Bible was made available directly to the general public which came with a variety of scriptural study guides and aids (collectively called an apparatus), which included verse citations that allow the reader to cross-reference one verse with numerous relevant verses in the rest of the Bible, introductions to each book of the Bible that acted to summarize all of the material that each book would cover, maps, tables, woodcut illustrations and indices.

Because the language of the Geneva Bible was more forceful and vigorous, most readers strongly preferred this version to the Great Bible. In the words of Cleland Boyd McAfee, “it drove the Great Bible off the field by sheer power of excellence”

The Geneva Bible followed the Great Bible of 1539, the first authorised Bible in English, which was the authorized Bible of the Church of England.

During the reign of Queen Mary I of England (1553–58), a number of Protestant scholars fled from England to Geneva, Switzerland, which was then ruled as a republic in which John Calvin and, later, Theodore Beza, provided the primary spiritual and theological leadership. Among these scholars was William Whittingham, who supervised the translation now known as the Geneva Bible, in collaboration with Myles Coverdale, Christopher Goodman, Anthony Gilby, Thomas Sampson, and William Cole; several of this group later became prominent figures in the Vestments controversy. Whittingham was directly responsible for the New Testament, which was complete and published in 1557, while Gilby oversaw the Old Testament.

The first full edition of this Bible, with a further revised New Testament, appeared in 1560, but it was not printed in England until 1575 (New Testament) and 1576 (complete Bible). Over 150 editions were issued; the last probably in 1644. The very first Bible printed in Scotland was a Geneva Bible, which was first issued in 1579. In fact, the involvement of Knox and Calvin in the creation of the Geneva Bible made it especially appealing in Scotland, where a law was passed in 1579 requiring every household of sufficient means to buy a copy.

Some editions from 1576 onwards included Laurence Tomson’s revisions of the New Testament. Some editions from 1599 onwards used a new “Junius” version of the Book of Revelation, in which the notes were translated from a new Latin commentary by Franciscus Junius.

The annotations which are an important part of the Geneva Bible were Calvinist and Puritan in character, and as such they were disliked by the ruling pro-government Anglicans of the Church of England, as well as King James I, who commissioned the “Authorized Version”, or King James Bible, in order to replace it. The Geneva Bible had also motivated the earlier production of the Bishops’ Bible under Elizabeth I, for the same reason, and the later Rheims-Douai edition by the Catholic community. The Geneva Bible remained popular among Puritans and remained in widespread use until after the English Civil War. The Geneva notes were surprisingly included in a few editions of the King James version, even as late as 1715

God's Word Translation

The God’s Word Translation (GW) is an English translation of the Bible translated by the God’s Word to the Nations Society.

The God’s Word Translation of the Bible was produced by the God’s Word to the Nations Bible Mission Society in Cleveland, Ohio (although since April 2005 the Society has relocated to the Jacksonville, Florida, metro area). Although many of its board members were affiliated with the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS), the Society has no official ties to this specific Christian denomination. GW had its beginnings with a New Testament translation titled The New Testament in the Language of Today: An American Translation, published in 1963 by LCMS pastor and seminary professor William F. Beck (1904–1966).

According to Michael Hackbardt, Executive Director of God’s Word to the Nations since June 1992, Beck had not completed the Old Testament portion of his Bible prior to his death in 1966, but was awaiting textual suggestions from two colleagues, Elmer Smick, Professor of Old Testament at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary and Erich Kiehl of Concordia Seminary. Smick and Kiehl ensured it was published posthumously in 1976 as An American Translation (AAT).

In 1978, it was decided that Beck’s translation would be revised. Phillip B. Giessler, a pastor from Cleveland, Ohio, then formed a committee and revision work began in 1982. The work of Giessler’s committee (although it was—much like Dr. Beck’s earlier work—essentially a “one-man” translation team with a single English reviewer) yielded another translation of the New Testament that was released in 1988 titled New Testament: God’s Word to the Nations (GWN) This work was later renamed the New Evangelical Translation (NET) in 1990. However, according to Hackbardt, Beck’s AAT served only as a basis for “English style”. In early 1992, according to Hackbardt, all the earlier New Testament work was abandoned by the Society and an entirely new Bible translation based on the best Hebrew, Aramaic, and Koine Greek texts, and using the translation principle “closest natural equivalence”—beginning with the Old Testament—was completely re-translated by the Society’s five scholars, 17 technical reviewers, and four English reviewers. In early 1994 the translation was renamed GOD’S WORD prior to being turned over to World Bible Publishers in October 1994 for publication in March 1995.

The God’s Word Translation was released by World Publishing of Iowa Falls, Iowa in March 1995. The publishing rights were acquired in June, 2003, by Green Key Books of Holiday, Florida,and in 2008 rights to God’s Word were acquired by Baker Publishing Group.

Good News Bible

The Good News Bible (GNB), also called the Good News Translation (GNT) in the United States, is an English translation of the Bible by the American Bible Society. It was first published as the New Testament under the name Good News for Modern Man in 1966. It was anglicised into British English by the British and Foreign Bible Society with the use of metric measurements for the Commonwealth market. It was formerly known as Today’s English Version (TEV), but in 2001 was renamed the Good News Translation in the U.S., because the American Bible Society wished to improve the GNB’s image as a translation where it had a public perception as a paraphrase. Despite the official terminology, it is still often referred to as the Good News Bible in the United States. It is a multi-denominational translation, with editions used by many Christian denominations. It is published by HarperCollins, a subsidiary of News Corp.

The beginnings of the Good News Bible can be traced to requests made by people in Africa and the Far East for a version of the Bible that was easier to read. In 1961, a home missions board also made a request for the same type of translation. Besides these requests, the GNB was born out of the translation theories of linguist Eugene Nida, the Executive Secretary of the American Bible Society’s Translations Department. In the 1960s, Nida envisioned a new style of translation called Dynamic equivalence. That is, the meaning of the Hebrew and Greek would be expressed in a translation “thought for thought” rather than “word for word”. The dynamic theory was inspired by a Spanish translation for Latin American native peoples.

The American Bible Society, impressed with Nida’s theories, decided to use them. Due to these requests and Nida’s theories, Robert Bratcher (who was at that time a staffer at the American Bible Society) did a sample translation of the Gospel of Mark. This later led to a translation of the full New Testament. The result, titled Good News for Modern Man: The New Testament in Today’s English Version, was released in 1966 as a 599-page paperback with a publication date of January 1, 1966. It received a mass marketing effort with copies even being made available through grocery store chains. The New Testament would see second, third, and fourth editions released in 1967, 1971, and 1976, respectively.

The Psalms were published in 1970 as The Psalms For Modern Man in Today’s English Version. Other portions of the Old Testament began to appear over the course of the 1970s – Job in 1971, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes in 1972, Jonah in 1973, Ruth, Hosea, Amos, and Micah in 1974, and Exodus in 1975.

In 1976, the Old Testament was completed and published as the Good News Bible: The Bible in Today’s English Version. In 1979, the Apocryphal/Deuterocanonical Books were added to the Good News Bible and published as Good News Bible: Today’s English Version with Deuterocanonicals/Apocrypha and also later published as part of subsequent Catholic and Orthodox Editions. In 1992, the translation was revised with inclusive language.

The Bible Societies released the Contemporary English Version in 1995, also using jargon-free English. While this translation is sometimes perceived as a replacement for the GNB, it was not intended as such, and both translations continue to be used. While the American Bible Society promotes both translations, the British and Foreign Bible Society and HarperCollins have since 2007 refocused their publishing efforts on the GNB including the Good News Bible iPhone App.

Good News Bible
The international cover of the Good News Bible, used since 2004
Full name Good News Bible
Other names Good News Translation, Today’s English Version
Abbreviation GNB (or GNT/TEV)
OT published 1976
NT published 1966
Complete Bible
published
1976
Textual basis Medium Correspondence to Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece 27th edition
Translation type Dynamic equivalence
Publisher Bible Societies, HarperCollins
Copyright American Bible Society 1966, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1976, 1979 (Deuterocanonicals/Apocrypha), 1992; Anglicizations British and Foreign Bible Society 1994

 

Holman Christian Standard Bible

The Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) is a modern English Bible translation from Holman Bible Publishers. The New Testament was published in 1999, followed by the full Bible in March 2004.

The roots of the HCSB can be traced to 1984, when Arthur Farstad, general editor of the New King James Version of the Bible, began a new translation project. In 1998, Farstad and LifeWay Christian Resources (the publishing arm of the Southern Baptist Convention) came to an agreement that would allow LifeWay to fund and publish the completed work. Farstad died soon after, and leadership of the editorial team was turned over to Dr. Edwin Blum, who had been an integral part of the team. The death of Farstad resulted in a change to the Koine Greek source text underlying the HCSB, although Farstad had envisioned basing the new translation on the same texts used for the King James Version and New King James Version. He followed the Greek Majority Text which he and Zane C. Hodges had authored. After Farstad’s death, the editorial team replaced this text with the consensus Greek New Testament established by twentieth-century scholars.The editions of the United Bible Societies and of Nestle-Aland’s Novum Testamentum Graece were primarily used, along with readings from other ancient manuscripts when the translators felt the original meaning was not clearly conveyed by either of the primary Greek New Testament editions.

International Standard Version

The International Standard Version or ISV is a new English translation of the Bible for which translation was complete and published electronically in 2011. Hardback and paperback editions of the complete translation are expected in 2019.

The texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls have been used to provide a textual apparatus for understanding the Old Testament.

Although the version is copyrighted, the ISV Foundation has made digital versions of the Bible available freely in some formats such as e-Sword and mysword applications for mobile phones.The ISV New Testament was released on 10 April 1998, and the complete Bible made available in 2011. Release 2.0 is available in digital form with complete bound volumes expected in 2019.

International Standard Version
Full name International Standard Version
Abbreviation ISV
Complete Bible
published
2011 (electronic)
Textual basis NT: Novum Testamentum Graece 27th edition. OT: Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia with influence from Dead Sea Scrolls, Samaritan Pentateuch, Septuagint, Latin Vulgate, Syriac Peshitta, and Aramaic Targums. 1Qlsa for Isaiah.
Translation type Mixed formal & dynamic equivalence (“Literal-Idiomatic”)
Reading level High School
Copyright © 2011 The ISV Foundation.

 

King James Version

The King James Version (KJV), also known as the King James Bible (KJB) or simply the Authorized Version (AV), is an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England, was commissioned in 1603 and completed as well as published in 1611 under the sponsorship of James VI and I.[a][b] The books of the King James Version include the 39 books of the Old Testament, an intertestamental section containing 14 books of the Apocrypha, and the 27 books of the New Testament. Noted for its “majesty of style”, the King James Version has been described as one of the most important books in English culture and a driving force in the shaping of the English-speaking world.[2][3]

It was first printed by John Norton & Robert Barker, both the King’s Printer, and was the third translation into English approved by the English Church authorities: The first had been the Great Bible, commissioned in the reign of King Henry VIII (1535), and the second had been the Bishops’ Bible, commissioned in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (1568).[4] In Geneva, Switzerland the first generation of Protestant Reformers had produced the Geneva Bible of 1560[5] from the original Hebrew and Greek scriptures, which was influential in the writing of the Authorized King James Version.

In January 1604, King James convened the Hampton Court Conference, where a new English version was conceived in response to the problems of the earlier translations perceived by the Puritans,[6] a faction of the Church of England.[7]

James gave the translators instructions intended to ensure that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology of, and reflect the episcopal structure of, the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy.[8] The translation was done by 6 panels of translators (47 men in all, most of whom were leading biblical scholars in England) who had the work divided up between them: the Old Testament was entrusted to three panels, the New Testament to two, and the Apocrypha to one.[9] In common with most other translations of the period, the New Testament was translated from Greek, the Old Testament from Hebrew and Aramaic, and the Apocrypha from Greek and Latin. In the Book of Common Prayer (1662), the text of the Authorized Version replaced the text of the Great Bible for Epistle and Gospel readings (but not for the Psalter, which substantially retained Coverdale’s Great Bible version), and as such was authorized by Act of Parliament.[10]

By the first half of the 18th century, the Authorized Version had become effectively unchallenged as the English translation used in Anglican and English Protestant churches, except for the Psalms and some short passages in the Book of Common Prayer of the Church of England. Over the course of the 18th century, the Authorized Version supplanted the Latin Vulgate as the standard version of scripture for English-speaking scholars. With the development of stereotype printing at the beginning of the 19th century, this version of the Bible became the most widely printed book in history, almost all such printings presenting the standard text of 1769 extensively re-edited by Benjamin Blayney at Oxford, and nearly always omitting the books of the Apocrypha. Today the unqualified title “King James Version” usually indicates this Oxford standard text.

King James Version
The title page to the 1611 first edition of the Authorized Version of the Bible by Cornelis Boel shows the Apostles Peter and Paul seated centrally above the central text, which is flanked by Moses and Aaron. In the four corners sit Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, authors of the four gospels, with their symbolic animals. The rest of the Apostles (with Judas facing away) stand around Peter and Paul. At the very top is the Tetragrammaton “יְהֹוָה” written with Hebrew diacritics.
Abbreviation KJV, KJB, or AV
Complete Bible
published
1611
Online as King James Version at Wikisource
Textual basis OT: Masoretic Text, some LXX and Vulgate influence.
NT: Textus Receptus, similar to the Byzantine text-type; some readings derived from the Vulgate.
Apocrypha: Greek Septuagint and Latin Vulgate.
Copyright Public domain due to age, publication restrictions in the United Kingdom

 

Lexham English Bible

The Lexham English Bible (LEB) is an online bible released by Logos Bible Software. The New Testament was published in October 2010 and has an audio narration spoken by Marv Allen. It lists as General Editor W. Hall Harris, III. The Old Testament translation was completed in 2011.[1][2]

According to its foreword, the translator’s intent was to achieve:

unparalleled … transparency with the original language text. … It was produced with the specific purpose of being used alongside the original language text of the Bible. Existing translations, however excellent they may be in terms of English style and idiom, are frequently so far removed from the original language texts of scripture that straightforward comparison is difficult for the average user. … The ability to make such comparisons easily in software formats … makes the need for an English translation specifically designed for such comparison even more acute.

The LEB is relatively literal and was derived from an interlinear translation of the Greek NT. An unusual feature of the LEB is the use of corner brackets to mark idioms in the English translation. Italics are used to indicate words supplied by the translator with no direct equivalent in the underlying Greek.[3]

At its release, it only included the New Testament and was simultaneously offered for free use for Logos users as well as other popular software suites, including freeware such as e-Sword and The SWORD Project. These were later updated to include the Old Testament. It can also be accessed in its entirety on websites listed below. The LEB is available under a very permissive license which allows royalty-free commercial and non-commercial use.

Lexham English Bible
Full name Lexham English Bible
Abbreviation LEB
OT published 2011
NT published 2010
Textual basis NT: SBL Greek New Testament.
Translation type Formal Equivalence
Reading level High School
Publisher Logos Bible Software
Copyright Copyright 2010 Logos Bible Software

 

The Message Bible

The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language is a highly idiomatic translation of the Bible by Eugene H. Peterson published in segments from 1993 to 2002. It is a simplistic translation of the original languages of the Bible. The Message is a personal paraphrase of the Bible in English by Peterson from the original languages. The contemporary American slang used in the translation deviates from a more neutral International English, and it falls on the extreme dynamic end of the dynamic and formal equivalence spectrum.

The Modern English Version

The Modern English Version (MEV) is an English translation of the Bible begun in 2005 and completed in 2014. The work was edited by James F. Linzey, and is an update of the King James Version (KJV), re-translated from the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus. The ecumenical Committee on Bible Translation is composed of 47 American and English scholars from the three major branches of Christendom: Orthodox, Protestant, and Roman Catholic

Modern English Version
 
Full name Modern English Version
Abbreviation MEV
Language English
Complete Bible
published
2014
Authorship James F. Linzey (chief editor)
Derived from King James Bible
Textual basis NT: Textus Receptus
OT: Jacob ben Hayyim Masoretic Text
Translation type Formal equivalence
Publisher Passio (Charisma House)
Copyright 2014 Military Bible Association
Religious affiliation Protestant

 

New American Standard Bible

The New American Standard Bible (NASB) is an English translation of the Bible by the Lockman Foundation. The New Testament was first published in 1963, and the complete Bible in 1971.The most recent edition of the NASB text was published in 1995.

The NASB was published in the following stages:

  • Gospel of John (1960)
  • The Gospels (1962)
  • New Testament (1963)
  • Psalms (1968)
  • Complete Bible, Old and New Testaments (1971)
  • Modified Editions (1972, 1973, 1975, 1977)
  • Updated Edition (1995)

In parallel with the Bible itself, the NAS Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible was published in August 1997. For convenience, this concordance uses the same word numbering system as Strong’s Concordance.

New American Standard Bible
 
Full name New American Standard Bible
Abbreviation NASB or NAS (1995 update “NASU”)
OT published 1971
NT published 1963
Derived from American Standard Version (ASV)
Textual basis
  • OT: Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia with Septuagint influence
  • NT: Novum Testamentum Graece
Translation type Formal Equivalence
Reading level 10.0
Version revision 1995
Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

 

New International Reader's Version

The New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) is an English translation of the Christian Bible. Translated by the International Bible Society (now Biblica) following a similar philosophy as the New International Version (NIV), but written in a simpler form of English, the NIrV seeks to make the Bible more accessible for children and people who have difficulty reading English, such as non-native English speakers. The authors describe it as a special edition of the NIV written at a third grade reading level.

Here is a comparison of a passage in the King James Version, the New International Version, and the New International Reader’s Version:

KJV: “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” (1 Timothy 3:16, KJV)
NIV: “Beyond all question, the mystery from which true godliness springs is great: He appeared in the flesh, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.” (1 Timothy 3:16, NIV)
NIrV: “There is no doubt that godliness is a great mystery. Jesus appeared in a body. The Holy Spirit proved that he was the Son of God. He was seen by angels. He was preached among the nations. People in the world believed in him. He was taken up to heaven in glory.” (1 Timothy 3:16, NIrV)
New International Reader’s Version
Full name New International Reader’s Version
Abbreviation NIrV
Language English
OT published 1995
NT published 1994
Complete Bible
published
1996
Derived from New International Version
Reading level 2.90
Publisher International Bible Society
New King James Version

The New King James Version (NKJV) is an English translation of the Bible first published in 1982 by Thomas Nelson.The New Testament was published in 1979, the Psalms in 1980, and the full Bible in 1982. It took seven years to complete.The anglicized edition was originally known as the Revised Authorized Version, but the NKJV title is now used universally.

The NKJV translation project was conceived by Arthur Farstad. It was inaugurated in 1975 with two meetings (Nashville and Chicago) of 130 biblical scholars, pastors, and theologians. The men who were invited prepared the guidelines for the NKJV.

The aim of its translators was to update the vocabulary and grammar of the King James Version, while preserving the classic style and literary beauty of the original 1769 edition of the King James Version. The 130 translators believed in faithfulness to the original Greek, Aramaic, and Hebrew texts including the Dead Sea Scrolls. Also agreed upon for most New King James Bibles were easier event descriptions, a history of each book, and added dictionary and updated concordance.

New King James Version
 
Full name New King James Version
Abbreviation NKJV
Complete Bible
published
1982
Derived from King James Version
Textual basis NT: Textus Receptus, derived from the Byzantine text-type. OT: Masoretic Text with Septuagint influence
Translation type Formal Equivalence
Reading level 9.0
Copyright Copyright 1979, 1980, 1982 Thomas Nelson
New Life Version

The New Life Version (NLV) of the Bible is a simplified English translation by Gleason and Kathryn Ledyard

The translation was born out of the Ledyards’ missionary work in the Canadian Arctic to First Nations populations, who did not always speak English fluently. The NLV uses a limited vocabulary of about 850 words, not including proper names. This was done to make the text easier to read and understand, a goal that the Ledyards felt was not adequately met by existing English translations of the Bible.

The NLV uses gender-specific language and uses no contractions. Confusing wording is avoided. Weights and measures are worded so that anyone can understand them; For example, Noah’s ark is described as being: “…as long as 150 long steps, as wide as twenty-five long steps, and eight times taller than a man.”

The translation of the New Testament was completed in 1969, and the complete NLV Bible with Old and New Testaments was first published in 1986.

The NLV Bible is published by Christian Literature International. It can be accessed online

World English Bible

The World English Bible (also known as the WEB) is a free updated revision of the American Standard Version (1901). It is one of the few public domain, present-day English translations of the entire Bible, and it is freely distributed to the public using electronic formats. The Bible was created by volunteers using the ASV as the base text as part of the ebible.org project through Rainbow Missions, Inc., a Colorado nonprofit corporation.

The World English Bible claims to be one of the few English-language Bibles custom translated to be understood by most English-speakers worldwide, eliminating the need for data-processing based or computer operating system-specific internationalizations. Work on the World English Bible began in 1997 and it was first known as the American Standard Version 1997.

The World English Bible project was started in order to produce a modern English Bible version that is not copyrighted, does not use archaic English (such as the KJV), and is not translated into Basic English (such as the Bible In Basic English). The World English Bible follows the American Standard Version’s decision to transliterate the Tetragrammaton, but uses “Yahweh” instead of “Jehovah” throughout the Old Testament. The British and Messianic editions as well as the Apocryphal books and New Testament use the traditional forms (e.g., the LORD)

Wycliffe's Bible

Wycliffe’s Bible is the name now given to a group of Bible translations into Middle English that were made under the direction of John Wycliffe. They appeared over a period from approximately 1382 to 1395.These Bible translations were the chief inspiration and chief cause of the Lollard movement, a pre-Reformation movement that rejected many of the distinctive teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. In the early Middle Ages, most Western Christian people encountered the Bible only in the form of oral versions of scriptures, verses and homilies in Latin (other sources were mystery plays, usually performed in the vernacular, and popular iconography). Though relatively few people could read at this time, Wycliffe’s idea was to translate the Bible into the vernacular, saying “it helpeth Christian men to study the Gospel in that tongue in which they know best Christ’s sentence”.

Long thought to be the work of Wycliffe himself, the Wycliffe translations are now generally believed to be the work of several hands. Nicholas of Hereford is known to have translated a part of the text; John Purvey and perhaps John Trevisa are names that have been mentioned as possible authors. They included in the testaments those works which would later be called the Apocrypha by most Protestants (referred to as deuterocanonical by Roman Catholics and some Anglicans), along with 3 Esdras (which is now called 2 Esdras) and Paul’s epistle to the Laodiceans.

Although unauthorised, the work was popular. Wycliffe Bible texts are the most common manuscript literature in Middle English. More than 250 manuscripts of the Wycliffe Bible survive. One copy sold at auction on 5 December 2016 for US$1,692,500.

The association between Wycliffe’s Bible and Lollardy caused the Kingdom of England and the established Catholic Church in England to undertake a drastic campaign to suppress it due to many errors in the text. In the early years of the 15th century Henry IV (in his statute De haeretico comburendo), Archbishop Thomas Arundel, and Henry Knighton published criticism and enacted some of the severest religious censorship laws in Europe at that time. Even twenty years after Wycliffe’s death, at the Oxford Convocation of 1408, it was solemnly voted that no new translation of the Bible should be made without prior approval. However, as the text translated in the various versions of the Wycliffe Bible was the Latin Vulgate, and as it contained no heterodox content, there was in practice no way by which the ecclesiastical authorities could distinguish the banned version; and consequently many Catholic commentators of the 15th and 16th centuries (such as Thomas More) took these manuscript English Bibles to represent an anonymous earlier orthodox translation. Consequently, manuscripts of the Wycliffe Bible, which when inscribed with a date always purport to precede 1409, the date of the ban, circulated freely and were widely used by clergy and laity.

Young's Literal Translation

Young’s Literal Translation (YLT) is a translation of the Bible into English, published in 1862. The translation was made by Robert Young, compiler of Young’s Analytical Concordance to the Bible and Concise Critical Comments on the New Testament. Young used the Textus Receptus (TR) and the Masoretic Text (MT) as the basis for his translation. He wrote in the preface to the first edition, “It has been no part of the Translator’s plan to attempt to form a New Hebrew or Greek Text—he has therefore somewhat rigidly adhered to the received ones.” Young produced a “Revised Version” of his translation in 1887, but he stuck with the Received Text. He wrote in the preface to the Revised Edition, “The Greek Text followed is that generally recognized as the ‘Received Text,’ not because it is thought perfect, but because the department of Translation is quite distinct from that of textual criticism, and few are qualified for both. If the original text be altered by a translator, (except he give his reasons for and against each emendation,) the reader is left in uncertainty whether the translation given is to be considered as that of the old or of the new reading.” A new Revised Edition was released ten years after Robert Young’s death on October 14, 1888. The 1898 version was based on the TR, easily confirmed by the word “bathe” in Revelation 1:5 and the word “again” in Revelation 20:5. The “Publishers’ Note to the Third Edition” explains, “The work has been subjected to a fresh revision, making no alteration on the principles on which the Translation proceeds, but endeavoring to make it as nearly perfect in point of accuracy on its present lines as possible.”

Types of Bibles
Most translations are available in several different types of Bible. Here are just a few of the many different kinds of Bibles.

1. Traditional: Text only. Minimal footnotes.

2. Study Bible: Such Bibles usually have extensive footnotes and explanatory notes next to the columns of text. They may also have extensive cross references, a narrative commentary, and maps.

3. Reference Bible: Usually has a cyclopedic index (like an encyclopedia with a reference to the verse where the word or thought is used), a concordance (like a dictionary of common words with examples of their usage and verse references for each example), and maps.

4. “Place in Life” Bible: Has meditations and thoughts about issues of concern to people at a particular stage in life. There are versions of these Bibles aimed at men, women, sports players, recovering addicts, new believers, converted Jews, small group members, and many others.

5. One-Year Bibles: Divided into 365 readings for each day of the year, usually with each having a portion of the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs.

6. Pastor’s Bible: Includes protocol outlines and recommended verses for hospital visits, weddings, funerals, and other events. Often has answers to frequently asked questions.

7. Children’s Bible: Usually includes color drawings, maps, and simplified stories.

8. Parallel Bible: Has from two to eight translations side by side.

9. Chronological Bible: Entire Bible in one continuous story with narration to cover gaps and make everything flow. The four gospels are harmonized into one, for example, and the writings of the prophets are placed in the proper historical place in the books of history.

10. Other Specialty Bibles: The Serendipity Bible, The Quest, Key Word Bible, Leadership Bible, Hebrew-Greek Keyword Bible, “Here’s Hope” Bible, Serenity Bible, and many others.

"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness." -2 Timothy 3:16